For some reason the Globe and Mail from Toronto wants to remake the image of Matt Cooke the player. I could care less if Matt Cooke donated some hockey equipment to a junior team in Canada. As a Boston Bruins fan I am still disgusted that Matt Cooke got away "scott-free" with dirty hit on Marc Savard where Cooke tried to dislodge Savard's head from the rest of his body.
Globe and Mail --- Matt Cooke is spending part of his days as a suspended NHL player in front of a video screen, with Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma or one of his assistants, Tony Granato or Todd Reirden.Color me skeptical and while you can’t see me, please note that I am rolling my eyes… I don’t see how a player that has played the game the way Matt Cooke does for so long is now somehow going to change the way he plays and now we are to believe that Cooke is a reformed player that is going to play the game within the confines of the rules. Yeah; and I have some beach front property in Florida that I would like to sell you, real cheap too. I will believe it when I see it. I think the next time this ruffian (or insert your own adjective_________ to describe Matt Cooke) screws up the NHL should really throw the book at him. I am all for bone crushing checks and good fights between heavy weights but the stuff Cooke doesn’t isn’t good hockey.
There, Cooke sits and watches the dirty hits that brought the outrage of the hockey world down on him last month.
The idea, Penguins general manager Ray Shero said, is to bring back a changed man when Cooke returns from his latest suspension that covered the final 10 games of the regular season and the first round of the playoffs. Pittsburgh leads the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first-round series three games to one, with a chance to close it out Saturday (CBC, noon ET). If the Pens advance, he could be back in action as early as next week.
“The coaches say [to Cooke] you have to be careful with this, be more conscious of this,” Shero said. “I think he wants to change the way things happen for him.”
Shortly after NHL director of hockey operations Colin Campbell announced the fifth suspension of Cooke's career for a hit to the head of New York Rangers defenceman Ryan McDonagh on March 20, Cooke said, “I realize and understand more so now than ever that I need to change.”
The million-dollar question is, can he change? Is the 32-year-old forward afflicted with an internal trigger that sets off uncontrollable, violent behaviour? Or is his intimidating, injurious style of play really a cold, contrived strategy designed to keep him playing in the NHL as long as possible?